By Eric Klein
The City Council last week introduced legislation that wound ban the NYPD’s collection of DNA from kids under 18 without consent from a guardian or attorney.
The city’s DNA database includes thousands of genetic samples procured by the NYPD, but few details about the city’s collection methodology – or whose DNA is kept on file – have been made public.
In a February hearing, the NYPD promised it would remove from the index people who have not been convicted of any crime, while also cutting down on the genetic stop-and-frisk tactics that helped procure their DNA.
During that hearing, NYPD officials admitted that at least 5 percent of the DNA in index came from children, and also said a portion of that DNA was collected surreptitiously or without parental consent, Legal Aid lawyers said.
“For far too long, the NYPD has engaged in secretive methods to take DNA from children without even securing consent from their parent,” Lisa Freeman, Director of the Special Litigation Unit with the Juvenile Rights Practice at The Legal Aid Society said after introduction of the new legislation.
The bill is likely to come up for a vote next year.